Applications May Fail with Access Violation During File Open

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Article ID: 192297 - View products that this article applies to.
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When a non-administrator opens a file from within an application such as Microsoft Paint, an access violation (AV) could occur causing the application to terminate.

Restarting the system is required to clear the problem. The AV occurs in the MFC DLLs. The problem does not occur if the user is an administrator.


If Shell32.dll is invoked before Rpcss.exe, shell calls CreateEvent() to create a certain event. An incorrect parameter passed on this call adds restrictions (security) on the event object.

The problem does not occur if Rpcss.exe initializes first because the right parameters are passed on the call to create the same event.


To resolve this problem, obtain the latest service pack for Windows NT 4.0 or the individual software update. For information on obtaining the latest service pack, please go to:
  • 152734 how to obtain the latest windows nt 4.0 service pack
For information on obtaining the individual software update, contact Microsoft Product Support Services. For a complete list of Microsoft Product Support Services phone numbers and information on support costs, please go to the following address on the World Wide Web:;EN-US;CNTACTMS


Microsoft has confirmed this to be a problem in Windows NT version 4.0. This problem was first corrected in Windows NT 4.0 Service Pack 5.


Article ID: 192297 - Last Review: January 11, 2015 - Revision: 3.0
Applies to
  • Microsoft Windows NT Workstation 4.0 Developer Edition
  • Microsoft Windows NT Server 4.0 Standard Edition
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